Ordinary Wednesday: Healing Home

In early primary school I remember composing the beginnings of a poem in my head. It went: I was born in Ballarat, some miles away from Melbourne,People always said to me, “Oh my, you must be well-born.” While I chose to prioritise rhyme and rhythm over truth (no-one has ever called me “well-born”, it showsContinue reading “Ordinary Wednesday: Healing Home”

Ordinary Wednesday: In the Wednesday of my life…

In the middle of the journey of our life, I came to myself, in a dark wood, where the direct way was lost. It is a hard thing to speak of, how wild, harsh and impenetrable that wood was, so that thinking of it recreates the fear. It is scarcely less bitter than death: but,Continue reading “Ordinary Wednesday: In the Wednesday of my life…”

Peace and the Thorn

“Mellow out,” they say. If I only could. Adolescent patient quoted by Dr Michael Piechowski Three times, the Apostle, says he cried,yet three times denied:within his side the unnamed thorn remained.To fester? To infect? No, to be the site of grace,for only this reply came: My grace is sufficient; in your weakness will my powerContinue reading “Peace and the Thorn”

Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 21

Then the Lord God provided a leafy plant and made it grow up over Jonah to give shade for his head to ease his discomfort, and Jonah was very happy about the plant. But at dawn the next day God provided a worm, which chewed the plant so that it withered. When the sun rose,Continue reading “Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 21”

Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 15

When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he relented and did not bring on them the destruction he had threatened. Jonah 3:10 This should really be where the book of Jonah finishes. And in many children’s bible versions, it does finish here. The narrative arc of the disobedientContinue reading “Advent with the Prophet Jonah: Day 15”

The Gospel Reading

The day had gone on long enough.First the Pharisees and their questions,then the intruding children,then the camel and the needle’s eye,so that, when they cried out,”Who then can be saved?” it wasas much from the weariness of the day’s debates as the thought that riches could keep an earnest man from heaven.And so, right whenallContinue reading “The Gospel Reading”

Day Zero

On this dayI still wrestled my childreninto their clothes,still raced out the door too late for comfort,still pricked my finger with a rose thorn,still feared that all my labour’s in vain,and found the evening slumpa little close to despairyeteverything changed, while nothing changedand mustard seeds of life were at workwhether we noticedor not.


Be present, O merciful God, and protect us through the hours of this night, so that we who are wearied by the changes and chances of this life may rest in your eternal changelessness; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. Collect for Compline, The Book of Common Prayer Full of contradiction, I am buoyedby the blossomContinue reading “Changeless”

Till We Have Our Faces Back

First you will learn about smiles,how much you smile,what’s contained in a smile,what’s implied in the different degrees of smile:in a curl of the lip at a funny thought,in the mouth’s outstretched cornersto greet the close acquaintance, in the sardonic phrase,the empathic moment.All these things you will learnwhen they cannot be seen.And eyes. You willContinue reading “Till We Have Our Faces Back”

Werribee Dragonfruit

Strange to be flourishing so far afield;its home is equatorial, tropical,not here, among suburban paddocks,with a straight line down to Antarctica.Yet, while silver birch weepsand quince decks boggy ground with its midwinter yellow,this Malaysian friend greets me withloud, audacious pink,asserting its brilliant right to exist,here, far from home:fruitless, pointless,its only purpose to be,to glory, andContinue reading “Werribee Dragonfruit”